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Bartering Red Quarters

Give, and [gifts] will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over.  Luke 6:38 Amplified

Photo courtesy of pixabay.One of God’s blessings came after Dad decided to barter one of his talents with the apartment owners.

Mom and Dad managed their own rental properties and then took on the job of an apartment complex of eighty apartments. Mom interviewed new renters, cleaned the units when folks moved out, and kept the accounts. She pulled the vacuum along the hallways and scrubbed windows in entryways. Dad, with a Detroit Tigers’ baseball cap atop his thinning hair, did light maintenance for all the buildings. He also worked a full-time job at Great Lakes Steel Mill in Ecorse, Michigan.

Each apartment unit had a laundry room with washers and dryers maintained by the owners. With the high usage, Dad contacted the owner often for repairs. Then he hit upon the bartering idea. He tossed out a suggestion to the owners. “I’ll only call you for major repairs to the machines,” he bargained, “if you’ll let my family use them for free.”

“How do you suggest we do that?” asked the owner.

Dad said, “I’ll paint a red stripe on each side of the quarters we use to wash and dry our clothes. Then when you empty the cash box on the machines, you can return all the red quarters to us.” They agreed.

Mom attended services on Sunday, tithed, and gave offerings from her part of the family income. Our family learned to give to God’s work, and God blessed. With five children in the family, four of us went to college and one to the United States Army. My brother retired and gave years of service in ministry to the military in Germany and Scotland. One sister and her co-worker traveled the world as missionary evangelists. Others sang or taught Sunday school. I’d say Mom’s giving had a return that was pressed down, shaken together, and running over.

Our obedience to God in giving for His work is necessary. It isn’t about how much we give but about obedience. When God has our obedience, He has us. Our faithfulness in all things shows our allegiance to Him, and blessings come back to us.

Give to God, and watch the various ways He will give back to you.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

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Phyllis Freeman

Phyllis Qualls Freeman is a freelance writer with twenty years’ experience and more than four hundred published devotions, magazine articles, and newspaper human-interest pieces. She lives near Chattanooga, Tennessee, and is published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Answered Prayers, and several anthologies. She writes devotions on assignment and enjoys mentoring new writers.